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Major Roatan Attractions - Dare Not to Miss!
By Wain Roy Platinum Quality Author

There has been a recent buzz about Roatan becoming Caribbean "IT" hub in the coming years. This is no surprise indeed as Roatan houses almost everything that can rank it as one of the most amazing tourist destinations in the world.

This Honduras Bay Island stands proudly on the world's second largest barrier reef. Sugar-white beaches, clear turquoise water, shores lined with coconut trees, but above all- a placid calm. Roatan is famous for scuba-diving, horseback riding, snorkeling, and sea kayaking. These different activities make your Roatan exploration trip even more exciting.

So while you prepare to undertake the Roatan Island Tour, make sure you visit the following:

  1. Ship-wrecks at Dixon Cole: The East End showcases two ship-wrecks close to the shore at Dixon Cole. You can also play with the iguanas at the Archs Iguana Farm, just a short drive from the French Harbor.
  2. The Rain Forest: Get close to nature by choosing a canopy tour in the lush tropical rain forest of Roatan. The forest is replete with wild parrots and monkeys. Gliding on zip lines is a great thrilling way to ride through the forest amongst the trees.
  3. The West End: This area houses the luxury residential community of Lawson Rock and the beachfront town of West End- ideal for shopping and swimming. Besides, do not forget to ride on the Coral Reef Explorer to get a glimpse of the pristine beauty of barrier reef formations.
  4. Roatan Institute for Marine Sciences: This place is a must-visit as you get the opportunity to play with dolphins as per the Dolphin Encounter Programs endorsed by the Roatan Institute for Marine Sciences. The white-sand island of Bailey Key can be literally termed as the 'school of dolphins'
  5. The Half Moon Bay Beach: This beautiful beach provides excellent facilities for swimming, sun-bathing, snorkeling, and tasting the delightful cuisine of the Caribbean.
  6. Punta Gorda: This village in Roatan presents a unique mix of cultural heritage and traditions nurtured by the Garifuna people. Visiting the place will awaken Roatan's unmatchable history. A halt at the Oak Ridge will make way for an encounter with inhabitants of English descent.
  7. Garden Tour: The hike to the top for a fantastic view in the Carambola Gardens and beholding the flora and fauna in the Gumbalimba Park cannot be done away with.

For more detailed information on Roatan Island Tour, you can consult your hotel or even rental agencies. Renting a car or scooter is a great way to explore the island. You also have the option of Roatan motorcycle rentals - to drive smoothly along the entire stretch of Roatan and have the experience of a lifetime!

Wain Roy is an internet marketing professional expert in various industries like real estate, web design, finance, medical tourism and Roatan Island Tour

 

A Caribbean Dream: Scuba Diving on Roatan and the Honduras Bay Islands

By Mike Brown

What's your idea of a tropical paradise? Perhaps it includes palm trees, sandy white beaches and crystal blue water. What if it had no crowds and featured some of the world's best scuba diving as well? That pretty well describes the Honduras Bay Islands.

Located in the western Caribbean off the coasts of Honduras and Belize, the Bay Islands are one of the few unspoiled tropical paradises left on earth. They consist of the islands of Roatan, Utila, Guanaja and over 60 islets sitting atop the world's second largest barrier reef.

Discovered by Columbus in 1502, the islands were long a refuge for pirates like Henry Morgan. Today they feature a laid-back lifestyle, a friendly English-speaking population, and a great vacation opportunity for divers and non-divers alike.

Scuba Diving & Snorkeling

The Bay Islands have become one of the Caribbean's top dive destinations because of their large reef system and great variety of corals and sponges. The water features good visibility, little current and over 800 species of fish. Diving depths vary from reefs in 15 feet of water to sea mounds that slope down 200 feet.

Roatan, the largest of the Bay Islands, is about 42 miles long and 2 miles wide. Both Roatan's northern reef and southern fringing reef boast around 40 dive sites each, offering spots for both novice and experienced divers that are characterized by plummeting walls, crevices and caverns.

Roatan features a number of excellent shore diving sites, including the famous Spooky Channel. An ancient streambed forming a cut through the reef, Spooky Channel can be reached from the pier Bay Islands Beach Resort. While snorkelers can explore the 8-foot crack at the top of the reef, divers can swim through shafts of light in the much wider interior of the channel.

The smaller island of Utila has gained a reputation as a great place for beginning divers. It offers the least expensive dive certification courses on the planet, and has become something of a Mecca for low-budget travelers. Competition between over a dozen small dive shops has brought prices down to between $125 - $150 for an open water certification course or an advanced open watercourse.

Recently it has been discovered that Utila is also one of the best places in the world to see whale sharks, the world's largest fish (don't worry, they're harmless). March, April and May are the best months to see these giants. Other spots offer the opportunity to dive and swim with the dolphins.

Other Activities

While scuba diving is the main attraction, there is much more to see and do on the Bay Islands.

Non-divers can get a close look at the coral reefs with the C-BUG mini-sub. Located on Roatan's West End, this two-person submarine will take you down as far 700 ft. below the surface.

Families will love the Tropical Treasures Bird Park on Roatan. The park contains one of the most extensive collection parrot species in Central America. Carambola Gardens offers a relaxing stroll through a diverse collection of flowering plants, ferns, fruit trees and orchids. Kids will love Roatan's Iguana Farm, where the over-hunted green iguanas that laze about.

Many companies also offer sea kayaking from Roatan's West End, another way to experience the beautiful coastline. From half-day rentals to one, two or 6-day tours, sea kayaks offer the most adventurous way to get around to the island's best snorkeling spots.

Getting There

Continental Airlines flies directly from Houston to Roatan. The airline also flies from Newark (New York) to San Pedro Sula on the Honduran mainland, with a connection to Roatan. You can also fly either American Airlines or Continental Airlines via Belize City to San Pedro Sula and catch a connection to Roatan.
TACA Airlines, the low fare Latin American carrier, flies directly to Roatan from both Miami and Houston. The airline also flies from Los Angeles, New Orleans and San Francisco, with connecting flights to Roatan. Sol Air is a new airline that has recently launched and flies direct to Roatan from Miami and Dallas.

The Bay Islands Tourism web site has a very useful schedule of national flights (http://www.bayislandstourism.com).

Once on the islands you can get to any destination with inexpensive taxis, bus service and water taxis.

Where To Stay

The islands feature a number of dive resorts, including Anthony's Key Resort on Roatan's north shore and the Coco View Resort on the islands south shore. Most are designed to blend in with the island environment, and none are built higher than the tallest palm tree.

TropicalREZ.com (http://www.tropicalrez.com), a central reservations and booking service specific to the islands can help you with accommodations.

Mike Brown is the Office Manager for Roatan Realty, which serves the Bay Islands of Roatan [http://www.roatanrealty.com/info_detail.asp?id=5], Utila [http://www.roatanrealty.com/info_detail.asp?id=6] and Guanaja. The company offers comprehensive listings of local properties and organizes real estate investor tours of the islands.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Mike_Brown

 

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Last modified: April 15, 2009